avatar for Keith Hefner

Keith Hefner

Youth Communication
Executive Director
Keith Hefner is executive director of Youth Communication (YC), which he co-founded in 1980. YC provides professional development and curricula for educators and youth workers that help them engage struggling teens and strengthen their social-emotional competencies and their literacy skills.

Hefner is the co-author or executive editor of several Youth Communication curricula on social-emotional learning, gender, career readiness, resilience, and other topics.

Hefner founded Youth Communication in 1980. He is the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship and other awards for his work in youth development and literacy.

Under his direction, Youth Communication has won many awards for its work, including a Coming Up Taller award from the National Endowments for the Arts and the Humanities, two Golden Lamp awards for the nation's best educational periodical from the Association of American Publishers, and dozens of awards for its curriculum and stories from the Association of American Publishers, the National Council on Crime and Delinquency, the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial, and others.